The Irish St Leger is one of four Group 1 races on Sunday’s Champions Weekend card at the Curragh (September 13) and eight runners are set to go to battle it out over 1 mile and 6 furlongs for a first prize of 232,000 Euros.
Fujaira Prince is a fascinating runner for English-trainer Roger Varian. The 6-year-old has looked an improved animal this season when winning firstly at Royal Ascot, after which connections kept him fresh for a successful tilt at the Ebor Handicap. But as most of his wins have come after a big break, he may not be at his best 22 days later.
Raa Atoll is hard to weigh-up, as he won a Group 2 in Germany in May and ran well to be third in another last time. He could run well again but should fall a few lengths short.
National Hunt trainer tries to pull off an audacious flat win with Micro Manage. The handicapper hit him with a 16lb rise for a win in a handicap last season, but he seemed to run up to his new mark of 107 when third last time. That run also came after a lengthy absence and he could improve further this time.
Aidan O’Brien has plundered the Irish St Leger several times and the lone 3-year-old Passion seemed to relish stepping-up to this trip last time. But he needs to take another step forward. Ryan Moore also prefers Sovereign, who was a shock winner of last year’s Irish Derby. He’s flattered by his second to Enable last time in a three-runner race, and he’s best judge son his defeat on his seasonal debut.
That defeat came behind Twilight Payment who had Barbados back in second. Twilight Payment also went on to win his next start over course and distance, accounting for subsequent winner Master Of Reality. But the latter put in an improved performance next time.
Search For A Song is our Irish St Leger tip. The reigning Champion was stepping up to this trip for the first time when winning the 2019 renewal and she relished the test when easily beating subsequent Group 1 winner Kew Gardens, with Master Of Reality back in fourth. Trainer Dermot Weld has also won this race eight times, with Vintage Crop winning it back-to-back, while Vinnie Roe won it four times. Steadily brought back to peak fitness over shorter distances, this is her obvious seasonal target.
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